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Defense team wants speedier DNA analysis for man accused of Missoula double murder

Posted: 3:09 PM, Oct 04, 2018
Updated: 2018-10-04 18:47:19-04

MISSOULA – The defense team for a man accused of a Missoula double murder in 2017 wants the state to expedite the DNA analysis process so they can have more time to work on their trial strategy.

Augustus Standingrock appeared in court via video teleconference for a status conference hearing in front of Judge James Wheelis on Wednesday afternoon.

Standingrock, along with his girlfriend Tiffanie Pierce, is accused of murdering two people in their Strand Ave. home in August 2017. Court documents say the two also tried disposing of the bodies in chemical-filled tubs in their basement.

Standingrock’s defense team argued that county prosecutors are not allowing Standingrock to have his right to a speedy trial or his right to complete discovery and effective preparation before his trial date.

The defense team wants the state to expedite the DNA analysis process so they can have time to work the discovers into their court strategy.

County attorneys on the case say that there is no intention to the slow DNA analysis process and that it is simply because the Montana State Crime Lab services the whole state of Montana, and that while some priority has been given the lab still faces major backlogs.

Wheelis said he will have a decision on the matter by Thursday morning.

RELATED: Motion requesting immunity for potential witness denied in Missoula double murder

Reporting by Connor McCauley for MTN News